UCC jumps through hoops in bid for world record

Students practising a hoola-hoop chain in UCC. They are attempting to break the Guinness World Record.

UCC students are banding together for a world record attempt — in a hula-hoop challenge.

Staff and students from the university will join forces tomorrow in an attempt to enter the Guinness Book of World Records for creating the longest human chain to pass through a hula-hoop.

The event ties in with UCC’s Mental Health Awareness Week, and aims to make people more aware of the stigma attached to certain words related to mental health.

It is hoped that more than 600 people will participate in the record attempt.

Campaign spokeswoman and occupational therapy student Ciara Crowley, from Kenmare, Co Kerry, said the words people use frequently belittles the experience of mental health difficulties.

She said: “We’re asking each person to wear a label and they can write down a word that might be offensive to people with mental health difficulties. So they get to choose their own word, one they might want to highlight or stop using themselves. An example would be ‘psycho’, ‘lunatic’ — words like that.”

She also said the event is “extremely positive” with everyone “standing strong together” and holding hands against stigmatisation.

Ms Crowley is organising the event with fellow occupational therapy student Aisling Whelan, from Clonmel, Co Tipperary.

The duo plans to film the event and log all registrations. If successful, they will send the evidence to the Guinness Book of World Records for verification.

The current world record is for 502 people, who passed through a hula-hoop last year in Hillview College, Trinidad and Tobago.

The event is being organised by UCC’s Occupational Therapy Service in the Disability Support Service in collaboration with the Students’ Union, Suicide Awareness and Mental Health Society, Clinical Therapies Society and Sláinte Society.

Members of public are welcome to take part in the event, which will be held at 1pm in UCC’s Quad.

For more contact otservices@ucc.ie or pre-register at 11am outside the Boole Library.


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